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Cleaning Up!

If you thought this was going to be about winning big at the Melbourne Cup then sorry to disappoint, it’s actually about laundry care in your massage practice.  I can hear some of you yawning already, sounds too much like housework, but there are some serious consequences to be considered.

The mixture of fabric, oil, and heat can be a combustible combination.  There have been numerous reported incidents of dryers catching fire and even towels folded straight out of the dryer and stored on a shelf combusting during the night.  Scary stuff, but there are a number of measures you can take to minimise the risks.

  • Use a water dispersible oil, the dispersant emulsifies the oil making it much easier to wash out.
  • Only use as much oil as you really need to in a treatment, the excess will only be absorbed into your linen.
  • Wash sheets and towels as soon as possible after use.  The longer they sit in the laundry basket the harder they will be to clean.
  • Wipe down your table at the end of the day with a suitable cleaner.  This will prolong the life of your table upholstery and ensures your fresh sheets aren’t picking up any oil residue.
  • Line dry where possible, otherwise use a lower temperature setting on your dryer and check your dryers manufacturer guidelines for care of linens that have been exposed to oil.
  • Consider proprietary detergents designed specifically for removing oil, they may cost a little more but if you only use them for your clinic laundering, and they reduce the fire hazard, then it’s probably worth it.
  • Spread washing to cool after it has been tumble dried, do not place in bins or piles while still hot.

No matter how well you care for your linens, the day will come when you will have to replace them, it’s just the cost of doing business.  It’s time to go shopping if your linens are stained or starting to smell.  Remember your clients are in intimate contact with these items and scratchy, threadbare, marked or rancid towels will certainly not create the right impression for your business.

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